Local News

1999 ACC Champions Return Home to Modest Crowd

Posted March 6, 1999 6:00 a.m. EST

— The Duke Blue Devils really brought it home Sunday -- the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship, that is.

The number one-ranked Blue Devils clinched the ACC title with a 23-point win over UNC .

The ACC champions arrived on campus around 8:30 p.m. to a crowd of fans waiting to see them.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski and the players stopped to sign some autographs after the bus ride back from Charlotte.

They have got some big games ahead of them, but they are taking it one day at a time.

"We feel great," said center Elton Brand. "It's good to be home in the Durham community and with our fans and friends again."

"We're happy to be in the tournament, number one seed overall and going back to Charlotte," said Krzyzewski. "Hopefully we'll have the same success in Charlotte next weekend that we did this weekend."

The Blue Devils say their next mission is to learn more about Florida A & M, the team they'll play first in the NCAA Tournament.

The team may be modest about what they have accomplished, but their fans are not afraid to say Duke is going all the way this year.

Students crowded into dorms all over campus Sunday afternoon to watch the ACC title game, thrilled to see their team sail past North Carolina for the third time this season.

They're expecting nothing less than a national championship.

"I think we'll win barring some kind of injury of some outside event that would be a distraction. I think at this point we're playing by far the best basketball in the country," said Duke student James Morgan.

Some Duke students say they're ready to plan a road trip to the Final Four in Saint Petersburg, Fla.